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News Release - State Board of Education approves ratings for Colorado schools

Dec. 11, 2019

State Board of Education approves ratings for Colorado schools 

District ratings finalized by Education Commissioner

DENVER - The State Board of Education on Wednesday finalized all ratings for Colorado public schools under the state’s accountability system, giving the highest rating to 1,256 schools which serve 620,219 students.

The board approved ratings for the majority of schools in November. The approvals today included ratings for schools that had requested the Colorado Department of Education reconsider the preliminary ratings announced in August and for schools where districts were required to select a rating (i.e. new schools).

To see the complete list of school plan types in an Excel spreadsheet format, visit the Performance Frameworks Results webpage. The school ratings in report form are also posted in Schoolview.

“Teachers and school leaders are working incredibly hard to provide access to a high quality education to all students, and I think it’s really important to acknowledge the great work going on throughout the state to support our students,” said Katy Anthes, Colorado’s education commissioner. “With the goal of continuous improvement of all schools, the state’s accountability system is designed to shine a light on how schools are doing so that we can focus on support for schools that need improvement and learn from schools that are successful.” 

All schools annually receive a School Performance Framework report based on performance on various common indicators, including student achievement and growth on state tests. High schools are also evaluated on postsecondary and workforce readiness outcomes including graduation, dropout and matriculation data. The Education Accountability Act of 2009 requires an annual review of district and school performance. The accountability system is intended to provide a statewide comparison of student performance that highlights areas of success and areas for improvement.

Schools receive one of the following ratings, or plan type assignments:
  • Performance Plan
  • Improvement Plan
  • Priority Improvement Plan
  • Turnaround Plan
  • Insufficient State Data

A total of 1,256 schools (68.6%) received the highest rating, Performance Plan, and 395 schools (21.6%) received the second-highest rating, Improvement Plan. A total of 114 schools (6.2%) received Priority Improvement Plan, 40 schools (2.2%) were assigned Turnaround Plan and 27 schools (1.5%) had Insufficient State Data due to low participation on state tests.

Performance Plans were assigned to 167 charter schools, or 67.6% of all charter schools, and 20 online schools, or 50% of all online schools.

The majority of schools (72% or 1,301 schools) received the same rating for 2019 as they did in 2018. A total of 235 schools (13.0%) improved by one or more rating level, while 234 schools (12.9%) moved down one or more rating level between 2018 and 2019.

Today’s approvals by the board followed the Colorado Department of Education's process allowing districts to request reconsideration of the preliminary ratings assigned in August to schools and districts. Districts requested reconsideration of the preliminary ratings assigned to 133 schools. After consideration of additional performance data, 78% of school requests were recommended for approval to the board.

Ratings for districts completed

Commissioner Anthes finalized the district ratings, a role assigned to her under the state’s accountability laws. Ratings for the vast majority of districts were assigned in November, and the outstanding ratings assigned this month reflect decisions from the state’s request for reconsideration process. Eighteen districts requested reconsideration of their preliminary district ratings, of which 94% were approved. 

To see the complete list of district accreditation ratings in an Excel spreadsheet format, visit the Performance Frameworks Results webpage. The district framework reports are posted in Schoolview.

Districts receive one of the following accreditation ratings:

  • Accredited with Distinction
  • Accredited
  • Accredited with Improvement Plan
  • Accredited with Priority Improvement Plan
  • Accredited with Turnaround Plan 

In total, 20 districts, or 11%, including Boards of Cooperative Educational Services or BOCES, received the highest rating of Accredited with Distinction. The second-highest rating of Accredited was assigned to 111, or 60%, of districts; the Improvement rating was assigned to 49 districts or 27%; and Priority Improvement was assigned to four districts, or 3%. No districts received the lowest rating of Turnaround.

The majority of districts (76.1% or 141 districts) received the same rating for 2019 as they did in 2018. A total of 21 districts (11.4%) improved by one or more rating levels, while 20 districts (10.8%) moved down one or more rating levels between 2018 and 2019.